“The Boys in the Hall” is celebrated by SUBWAY® with a look ahead at a young potential candidate and how he’ll stack up against baseball’s greatest. Mark Trumbo nicknamed “Trum Bomb” is a member of the Los Angeles Angels serving different roles over his four-year stint with the team as a first and third basemen outfielder and designated hitter. Trumbo is a rising star in the majors getting an All-Star nod in 2012 but whether he’ll be enshrined with a plaque in Cooperstown depends not so much on what he has achieved thus far but what he can achieve during the rest of his young career.
Drafted by the Angels in 2004 Trumbo made his major-league debut in 2010 as a pinch hitter for Mike Napoli. The 27-year-old struck out at his first plate appearance and remained in the game replacing Napoli at first base. It wasn’t until the following spring that Trumbo became known for his power at the plate earning him a starting spot on the 2011 Angels roster. The first basement hit his first career home run 10 games into the season and had 29 blasts to end the season. His 32 homers the following year – along with 146 hits and 95 RBI – earned him a spot on 2012 American League All-Star team.
Having only two full campaigns under his belt - not including his late call up in 2011 - and being halfway through his third Trumbo’s numbers as they stand now are not Hall of Fame worthy. As a power hitter the columns that would earn him a spot among baseball’s greats are in their infancy – being nowhere close to cracking the top 100 in home runs hits or RBI. Averaging out his current numbers as of two and one-half full-time seasons the Angel’s youngster would need a long injury-free career to gain entry to Cooperstown. In terms of home runs the 27-year-old (83) should crack the top 100 active players next season surpassing Corey Patterson (118) and he would end up passing Darryl Strawberry (335) to take over the 100th spot should he play another seven-to-eight seasons. Where the numbers are really against Trumbo however are in hits and RBI where in both categories he would need to maintain his average marks for the next 10-plus years.
Although these numbers look daunting at first glance Trumbo has one incredibly vital stat in his favor: 27 – that being his age. His time spent as a DH could potentially hurt his candidacy as voters hold higher offensive expectations from players in this position. However his role as the Angel’s on-again off-again DH – when not backing up Albert Pujols at first or taking outfield assignments – could prolong his career making his current batting numbers competitive over the long haul especially home runs. If Trumbo played into his forties which is not uncommon for many players on the all-time home run list he could potentially end his career being 18th overall passing sluggers the likes of Willie McCovey Frank Thomas and Ted Williams – all with 521 homers. Williams earned his entry in 1966 McCovey in 1986 and Thomas is eligible in 2014. To potentially be grouped with such elite hitters would – at the least – make voters take notice of Trumbo. Whether he reaches such a milestone depends on his consistency and health.
Jarett Burke is a freelance sports writer covering the MLB, NHL, NFL and NBA. He currently works as the Sports Editor for SportsDirect Inc.